Nada Chikitsa is the literal translation of Sound Healing in ancient Sanskrit language. There are historical records which prove that Nada Chikitsa has been used as an age-old tradition.
Sri Swamiji says, “The power of vibrations connects, in some manner, all things and all beings in the universe on all planes of existence. Nada vibrations work through the chord of sympathy existing between man and his surroundings. The human body has 72,000 astral nerves (nadis) which incessantly vibrate in a specific rhythmic pattern. Disturbance in their rhythmic pattern is the root cause of disease. The musical notes restore their normal rhythmic pattern, thereby bringing about good health. Listen with your heart and not with intellect.”
How does Sri Swamiji’s Music heal? The answer will not be farfetched to a genuine enquirer. In the first place, if we see what is at the back of all medicines which are used for healing purposes and if we ask what it is in them that heals, we shall find that it is the different elements which constitute our physical being. The same elements are present in these medicines as well, and that which is lacking in us is taken from them, or the effect which should be produced in our body is produced by them. The vibration which is necessary for our health is created in the body by their power; and the rhythm which is necessary for our cure is brought about by bringing the circulation of the blood into a certain rhythm and speed.
Energy to heal comes from the music must be applied in large quantities as a sick spiritual body can only neutralize small quantities of positive energy. Sri Swamiji’s music may appear aggressive at first for it has to be provided in huge quantities. Sri Swamiji’s music is more scientific than religious and uses fundamental principles of physics; Sri Swamiji’s music operates by converting matter into energy and energy into matter.
Raga Chikitsa means “healing through the use of raga (melodies)”. Sri Swamiji explains that His method of healing through music is a lost ancient art and that He is reviving this knowledge in the modern times. Identification of Indian Classical Ragas (Carnatic) and their consonance with the elements of the nature (pancha bhutas) helps Swamiji trace the concept related to “Music for Healing and Meditation”. Sri Swamiji says, “My way of rendering music and treatment of ragas in general is not outside the frame of orthodox tradition. Music is considered as an Upaveda, the Gandharva Veda in addition to Dhanurveda, Ayurveda and Artha Shastra. I use devotional music as means of spiritual energy transformation. Some Higher Force takes care of my process, once I decide to heal through music. Swara Shuddhi (Pure Notes) is held in great veneration and is considered as a standard of musical truth. Melody (Raga) is the result of Swara Shuddhi; there is clarity and pure energy in such a melody”.
Sri Swamiji’s uses concepts from Astrology, Astronomy, Herbalogy, Ayurveda, Gemology, Musicology, Human Psychology and Anatomy in choosing the ragas for different ailments.
Indian word for music is "Sangeet", literally, "Bringing it all together and expressing it." It is a holistic approach, in which the musician sets out to experience the infinite and shares this with the listeners. Central idea being, to activate the true inner core, "bindu", within one's self and to draw it out with one's life-breath, “prana”, offering it in an expression of sound.
It is this which helps to "cure" from within, in Swami Sri Ganapathi Sachchidananda’s music. Sri Swamiji expresses music as "nadopasana", seeking the divine through sound. In this ethos, music enriches both the listener and the performer through a combination of aesthetic and spiritual experience. Intension of His music is to look within, probing the submerged level of one's consciousness.
Music is a universal language. Encompassing all possible moods and forms of expression, it conveys the feelings of the heart more powerfully than any words of any language. Since time immemorial music is invested with divine powers to heal. Hindu scriptures have made a precise scientific study of words, pronunciations and there effects on temporal and astral planes. Sri Swamiji has expanded on this ancient tradition and brought it forward to the twentieth century.
Sri Swamiji has borrowed freely from the great masters of the past, but does not treat past as a stagnant tool in which to become trapped by its glories. He has shown that the greatness of the knowledge of past lies only in its relevance to today. His music is not limited to any particular culture, time, place or people. Sri Swamiji is proficient in a number of classical and modern instruments, curing people across the globe with his “Celestial Music".
Music is sound vibrations, it is energy in motion. To use this energy for healing requires that the person involved has a great musical ability and understanding. It also requires that the person has a sound a sound of energy. Sri Swamiji possesses all the ingredients required to heal effectively through music. Swamiji has demonstrated this knowledge with His in born profound musical abilities. Sri Swamiji also uses crystals and elements, such as fire, to cure people. Being a "bhramachari", He possess a wide range of energies and has precise knowledge of its' uses.
Sri Swamiji has related specific ragas (classical melodies) with healing of specific body organs. Answer to this lies in the vibration frequencies of these organs. The body has a number of energy centers, called “chakras", each of these has its own elemental basis, such as earth, fire, water etc. Each raga produces vibrations appropriate to a specific element, and therefore to a specific chakra and a set of related body organs.
Just as a doctor sweetens the medicine/pill, Sri Swamiji uses pleasing melodies to deliver his therapeutic energies. Explaining the therapeutic value of some of His compositions, Sri Swamiji said, the tune pertaining to His bhajan "Saptashwa Roodham" has good effect on the asthmatics and gives resistance against cold, "Sri-Ranjani" helps in diabetes and "Shubhapantuvarali" in heart diseases and so on.
It is Sri Swamiji's vow to relieve latent and chronic diseases of the humanity by treating them with specific healing ragas, Presence of the Divine Being is in each and every raga. Each raga belongs to a particular chakara, which in turn is governed by specific Panchamahabhootas -the five main elements. Keeping this in mind, Sri Swamiji has worked out the relationships of a particular ragas and how these can be employed to treat illness. Ragas have great potential to de-pressurize our tense minds by soothing the nerves. This science was originally explored in the ancient treaties on Gandharva Vidhya -art of the celestial musicians. Sri Swamiji has revived this lost technique of healing people with power of (divine) music.
Sri Swamiji explains, "When a patient goes to a doctor, the doctor prescribes medicine with a combination of causing and curing diseases ... To get cured of your ailment, it is not necessary for you to understand how the medicine works. Leave that to your doctor…."The inner light is shinning constantly. It reveals itself through the mirror called "mind". Defects in the mind blur the light within, but actually, that light remains unaffected by modification of the mind. One should ignore limitations of the mind and concentrate on the inner light. This inner light is God. To seek God should be the aim of one's life. There is an intimate relationship between music and God. But this relationship is only established when Nada (music) is approached with reverence and devotion. Nadopasana (worshipping through music) leads to Moksha (liberation / nirvana).”
Sri Swamiji's music is as multi-faceted as His life. In concerts Sri Swamiji plays His own compositions on the synthesizer and is accompanied by musicians playing classical Indian instruments. Healing and meditation music is in essence music therapy and an essential part of Sri Swamiji's mission to bring peace to the world. His music is very unique, as He follows the ancient concept of using pure sounds -Nada, and ancient Ayurvedic ragas -Medicinal melodies. Sri Swamiji's music is also devotional and is used as a vehicle for spiritual energy transmission.
"Physical health results from a healthy mind. (Celestial/spiritual) music helps in achieving relaxationby soothing the nerves and through that peace of mind.”
Sri Swamiji in his music, views the body as a mass of energy particles and classifies all physical ailments into two main types.
1) Illness caused by internal factors such as energy blockages or loss caused by inappropriate vibrating
2) Illness caused by external factors such as germs, virus etc.
Illnesses caused by internal factors can be cured by removing the conditions or the source of illness. In this case, the only really effective method is through use of energy. Chemical drugs and surgery are of little use in such cases. Most body pains are caused by energy retardation and incorrect vibrating frequencies. In such cases, energy is converted into heat in the cells and this is what causes the "pain". Most modern techniques tend to use drugs and chemicals that usually end up damaging the nerves, making the patient "feel" that the pain has gone, whereas in reality, only the ability to detect it is dead, not the pain itself.
Using "bio-rhythm" as a convenient model, Sri Swamiji clarifies His concept of energy retardation and its resulting pain. Its cyclical rhythm is an established model in medical and psychology circles. This is a rhythm of the flow of body's vital energies, therefore, it is obvious that flow of energy will not be constant, but will fluctuate with this rhythm. Where there is a partial blockage, retardation may occur when the flow is high, but ceases when it is low. What results is a cyclical pain such as menstrual cramps. Pain killers do not remove the pain; they simply numb the nerves for a short while so that we become unaware for a while. Curative energy actually removes the pain, which can only recur if a new energy blockage arises.
Illness caused by external agents occurs when the body's immune system has become weak or has lost its vitality and confidence. This confidence resides at the level of each individual cell. Brain is not the sole abode of intelligence; each cell is recognized to have some form of intelligence of its own. This aspect of the body has been explored extensively by Sri Aurobindo and others. In such cases, energy can be used to kill or weaken the infecting agents and strengthen the immune system, restoring he cells’ confidence enabling it to successfully combat most infections. Another cause of illness involves unwanted bodies formed with in our own bodies, such as tumors and kidney stones. These foreign bodies are themselves vibrating bodies of energy. They can be simply got rid of by neutralizing their energy. Cancers and other malfunctions of the body are largely the results of chemicals, externally derived or psychologically produced. These chemicals disrupt our body's energy flow, resulting in the sort of distortions one sees in a counter current of a stream. This can only be treated by delivering the correct quantity and type of energy at the correct place. This requires precise diagnosis and individual application and treatment. For persons like Sri Swamiji, who are already a part of the Higher Intelligence, this is easily achieved.
In energy healing, treatment of the physical body starts at the psychological level. As the "mind" (as opposed to the brain) is not physical, it can only be treated at the subtle energy level. Sri Swamiji operates at this level, paying minute attention to all such details. Mind is the store of our memories, such as fear, grief, pain etc. Our psychological health depends on erasing those elements which adversely effect us and this is what is done by music through a process of neutralization. Mind bending drugs are bad for mental and physical health and only produce adverse effects in the end.
Our spiritual body is an energy field, enveloping both the psychological and physical bodies. It can either close out energy, or attract it and let in energy. When it closes out vitalizing energy, it is dull and ugly in olor. It reduces the body to a closed system -a state of energy equilibrium, which eventually leads to psychological and physical degeneration. In addition, a dull spiritual body provokes only negative and aggressive reactions from others, attracting everything negative. As a result, it loses confidence and becomes weaker, speeding up it's loss of vital energy.
When it is bright, the spiritual body has brilliant color, it lets in vitalizing energy, and neutralizes all negative energies. This is a vital pre-requisite for good physical, spiritual and psychological health. Such a body attracts positive reaction from everyone and everywhere, gaining confidence and strength. Our spiritual body is affected by the company we keep and the sort of sounds we are subjected to. Hence, our spiritual body is the first to encounter and benefit from Sri Swamiji's music.
Energy to heal must be applied in large quantities, as an ill spiritual body can only neutralize small quantities of positive energy. This is why Sri Swamiji' s music may appear aggressive at first. Swamiji' s music is more scientific than religious. Using fundamental principles of physics, Sri Swamiji's music operates by converting matter in to energy and energy in to matter.
The renowned musician Maharajapuram Santhanam has said, "Each one of the ragas have curative powers. Swamiji has done a lot of research on this and I have (personally) heard firsthand accounts of cures through His music therapy. There is a divinity in His music and bhajans which makes it essentially different from others.”
At Sri Swamiji's satsang, one can hear the powerful voice, music and composition of Sri Swamiji. His praises to the Divine uplift the spirit, leaving one in a natural meditation of joy and bliss. No wonder Namasankirtan/satsang is said to be the easiest path to God.
Human body exists in two levels: The gross material level and the subtle, non-material level. Chakras are the energy centers from where nadis (nerves) converge and emerge. The nadi transport system belongs to the subtle body and the chakras are connected to the main nadi of this system, the sushumna nadi, which operates within the vertebral (spinal) column.
Chakras are active at all times, whether we are conscious of them or not. Each Chakra has a basic elemental state and different psychic states. These chakras are constantly vibrating with the movement of prana (life energy) inside the body and influencing one’s health and temperament. These changes are understood by neurobiologists as chemical changes produced by the endocrine glands whose secretions mix into the body’s blood stream directly and instantaneously and the electrochemical changes brought about by the nervous system at various levels.
For a Human body to work properly all of these nadis (pranic nervous system) should be working correctly. Of the 72,000 nadis in our body, 14 are considered most important. These important nadis give strength and vitality to various organs of our body and maintain their efficient functioning. If the organs are not functioning well, it means that there is some disorder in the pranic nervous system.
Explaining the therapeutic merit of some of his compositions, Sri Swamiji describes how various Ragas effecting different Chakras build resistance against innumerable illnesses. For instance, one musical composition with its particular vibrational quality will act upon the Chakra which is affected by Asthma, relieving its symptoms. Another Raga focuses on resistance to cold and diabetes. Another composition will act upon the heart chakra relieving the heart maladies and so on.
The whole of the human body can be considered as a mass of energy particles vibrating at certain frequencies, and illnesses are primarily caused by internal blockages in energy movement or due to inappropriate vibrating frequencies (increased or decreased frequencies). Sri Swamiji evokes sounds ranging from strings to santoor, to bells and our Nadis are bathed in the forces of Ragas especially selected by Him for a particular audience or day, and thus help rectifying the frequencies of different energy centers and hence help the free flow of energy in the body removing the blockages.
Here is the chart of 7 energy centers with the vibrating frequencies:
1. Muladhara Chakra -
The base of the spine and the element earth.
600 nadis emanate from it.
It vibrates 600 times in the course of one breath.
2. Swadishtana Chakra -
The genitals and the element water.
600 nadis converge into this chakra.
It vibrates 600 times in the course of one breath.
3. Manipura Chakra -
The navel and the element fire.
600 nadis are joined to this chakra.
It vibrates 600 times in the course of one breath.
4. Anahata Chakra -
The heart and the element air.
600 nadis are joined to this chakra.
It vibrates 600 times in the course of one breath.
5. Visshuddha Chakra -
The throat and the element space.
1000 nadis converge here including the ida, pingala and subhuman nadis.
It vibrates 1000 times in the course of one breath.
6. Ajna Chakra -
The point between the eye brows and the combination of the essence of all the elements in their purest form.
All 72,000 nadis converge here.
It vibrates 72,000 times in the course of a single breath.
7. Sahasrara Chakra -
The crown of the head and transcending all elemental influences.
Mind is the wave emerging from the subtle transformation of bio-magnetism in living beings. This wave as any other wave in the nature is characterized by a frequency. There has been plenty of research which has shown that human mental frequency works from 14 to 40 Hz. These waves have been commonly identified in 4 different ranges namely: Alpha, Beta, Theta and Delta waves.
Beta waves (ranging from 13-30 Hz) are most typically associated with normal waking states in which we are focused on external stimuli. Beta is born out of our basic survival orientation and is most present when we are sorting out and making sense of the external world. Beta affords the quickest response and allows us to attend to the largest number of things. Beta is increased in moments of stress or anxiety, enabling us to manage situations and solve immediate problems.
Alpha waves (ranging from 8-13 Hz) indicate an alert state with quiet mind. In this state, attention may be focused outward for problem solving or inward to achieve an alert meditative state. Increase alpha is often present in people who practice meditation or yoga.
Theta waves (ranging from 3.5-8Hz) reflect a mind state that is attuned to visualization, imagery and creative inspiration. These are produced during deep meditation. This is experienced during the dream state of our sleep. Delta waves (ranging from 0.5-3.5 Hz) are associated with the deepest levels of physical relaxation. The slowest of the brainwave frequencies, Delta is the rhythm of dreamless sleep. Delta waves are associated with physical rejuvenation and healing.
Art of Meditation is age-old and in general focused towards voluntary reduction of mental frequency and to reach subtler realms of consciousness. At this state of mind the whole gross as well as subtle planes of human body is rejuvenated. Sound on the other hand is also a vibrating wave characterized by different frequencies or what we commonly know it as pitch. There is a clear relationship between sound and mind, both being waves. Sound waves can affect human mind either to increase its frequency or reduce its frequency, thus music characterized by the art to reduce mind frequency helps to gain deep meditative states.
Sri Swamiji’s music, originated from the ancient tradition of Raga Ragini system, is aimed at shifting the level of consciousness of the listeners to subtler mind frequencies thus helping them experience inner peace, harmony and quietness of mind.